Thiago Alcantara sends out a defiant message from the Liverpool dressing room
"For sure it is exciting because you are competing against the best, in the best competitions as well, but also because it reminds you that we are in finals"
Liverpool midfielder Thiago Alcantara insists the players are in a “one-mission mood” as they enter a hugely-significant April.
Saturday’s early kick-off at home to Watford, when they could go top of the Premier League for the first time since September, is a prelude to a Champions League quarter-final with Benfica before they face Manchester City twice in two competitions within the space of a week.
Matches against Manchester United, Everton and Newcastle complete eight games in 29 days, although there is also the potential for a European semi-final first leg before the end of the month, and the Spain international likened the run of matches to a World Cup in terms of the importance of the fixtures.
“The other day I was talking with some friends about it and I never had, in the years that I have been involved in football, a month so exciting like this with such important and exciting matches every three days,” he told liverpoolfc.com.
“For sure it is exciting because you are competing against the best, in the best competitions as well, but also because it reminds you that we are in finals.
“It looks like a World Cup, a European Cup, where every game is a final. With that we are in a one-mission mood and we are there.”
The standout matches are the trip to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, April 10, with an FA Cup semi-final at Wembley the following Saturday.
However, Jurgen Klopp’s side cannot afford to focus on those seven days if they are to remain on track for an unprecedented quadruple.
“I think we are ready for all the challenges we have ahead and we just focus on the next game that we have,” Thiago added.
“We will always be like that, so we have just in our head now Watford and that’s it.
“I think the Carabao Cup (victory in February) gave us much more confidence than we had before.
“We had high stakes to win the final, we won it and the guys were incredibly happy and confident.
“But also it is important to arrive in this moment of the season and be ready for the finals that we have.”
That starts on Saturday at home to struggling Watford when Liverpool could leapfrog City and give themselves a two-point lead just before Pep Guardiola’s side head to Burnley.
Thiago does not believe, especially with there being less than an hour between their match ending and City’s kicking-off, they can strike much of a psychological blow.
“I don’t think to see us on top before City plays would be a boost,” he added.
“No, it’s just that we are in a moment where every three points count and we are really glad to arrive at this position.”
Influential right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold will not be fit for the weekend, having only started light running and outdoor work and not joined full training following a hamstring injury sustained a couple of weeks ago, but he is targeting the trip to City the following weekend.
Liverpool have also announced their first pre-season will be against Manchester United in Bangkok on July 12.
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